...or tries to...

Monday, October 24, 2011

Sunday along the St. Lucie

In this part of Florida, the southeast, you have to go north to go South. Up Interstate 95, where the back ends of industrial parks and salvage yards trail off into open fields and where you see your first citrus groves, grazing horses, herds of cattle. We were driving only an hour north, but it's just about there that the landscape starts to look like Georgia. The slash pines are taller and darker and grow closer together, the cypress trees drip moss. We're going to Stuart, a town on the St. Lucie River, not quite, but almost at the peak of our t.v. news viewing area, and somehow, though not really, very far away.

We're here, ostensibly, for a Sunday afternoon jazz concert on the river, and for that combination of water and sky and sunlight and air that seems particular to weekend afternoons, and the wonderful ordinary of this added to beach chairs and a book, bare feet, a man dancing with his chocolate lab, a kayaker drifting, ospreys circling overhead, and little kids struggling against being carried along the pier by their mom or dad or grandpa. People there only because they want to be there, in all of this.

I love my own town but it's a place of planning and action and going and getting. Up here it's slower. Stucco and Spanish tile and Art Deco never took hold, the master planners on their newly built railroad cars passed through on their way to Miami and the clapboards and shutters and porches and tin roofs remained.

But it's still Florida. They still paint things in ice cream flavors.

and all roads lead to the water's edge.

P.S. (Happy Birthday, J.!)


Sans! said...

Amy, here I am wanting to ask again, where is this place?? I want to see more! Ixora through potholes of fishes ! Colorado (yellow house) in Miami in Florida? A friend who has never wanted to visit America (despite having worked with the US Embassy for years) has just returned from a 1 month tour with his parents . They went to Vegas, LA, New York, Washington. An avid photographer, I think he took some of his best pictures in the US.

I now understand why there's always something familiar about your homes, your streets , your trees. Familiar but different. We both live in tropical climate (me minus the monsoons but they are still close -Malaysia) and like Miami, Singapore has also been voted the cleanest city.

We are close that way, Amy.:)

Amy said...

Sans, I know the feeling! I have a Flickr friend who lives in Dubai, a very different place geographically, but her neighborhoods have the same trees, the same flowers, sometimes the same style architecture. There is a definite kinship-sometimes just being able to name a flower or a tree photographed on the other side of the world is like finding a friend far away. Here, we brought most of our style from other places-all the coconuts palms were first imported from Jamaica, the date palms from Asia, the architecture from Spain, (because the first modern developers loved it best). Stuart is a town one county north, about two hours north of Miami, and I love its tin roofs, it's front porches, it's silver colored river calm. If my area had been settled in a different way, it might have looked like Stuart, but we're more influenced by Miami's growth, its art deco, clay roofs, tropical flowers, the blue-green ocean.

I have always wanted to see Singapore-it looks fascinating-a truly amazing mix of modern and tradition...maybe someday?